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During a visit to "Stonewall" Jackson's Headquarters in Winchester, I learned that the historic building had never been depicted in a painting, and decided this would be the perfect opportunity to do so.
No fighting had taken place at Jackson's winter headquarters, so I chose to illustrate a tranquil snow scene similar to my Confederate Winter. In walking around the former Lewis T. Moore house, I found that the most interesting side of the building was the original front. Where the public now enters is actually the side of the structure. Walking around to the original front, one finds that, aside from the entrance, the only major changes made since Jackson's time are the addition of two dormers on the second floor.
It was here in Winchester that Mary Anna, Jackson's second wife, joined him for the winter of 1861-62. The Jacksons stayed at the home of Dr. Graham, just a few doors away from Headquarters. I also learned that Mrs. Jackson would often walk over to Headquarters with a basket of food for supper.
The scene shows "Stonewall" Jackson saying goodbye to Mary Anna.
The General's blue uniform is of note. The coat is the same one Jackson wore at Virginia Military Institute when he was a professor of Artillery Tactics. It conforms to 1850 Uniform Regulations for Virginia Militia and, except for the buttons, is the "Old Army" uniform. Confederate Gary had not yet become universally standard.
As his entourage waits, he and Mrs. Jackson walk a few steps away for some parting words in private. Members of his staff are witness to this tender moment, Major Henry Kyd Douglas, the mounted officer on the extreme left of the painting, would later gain fame as Jackson's biographer. On foot and immediately to the right of Douglas is Lieutenant Colonel William Allan, Jackson's Chief of Artillery. Directly behind him, a mounted trooper chats with Captain Jed Hotchkiss, topographical engineer and noted mapmaker for the General.
Further on and just to the left of the stairs is Dr. Hunter McGuire, Jackson's medical chief, who later was to make his home in Winchester. Alongside Dr. McGuire in the red artillery officer's kepi is Lieutenant "Sandie" Pendleton. On the right of the stairs, Major Reverend Robert L. Dabney, in winter cape and coat, waits with Captain J.G. Morrison.
To the right of Morrison, a mounted trooper of Jackson's cavalry escort carries the standard of the first National Flag. Major D.B. Bridgeforth is on the extreme right. The rest of the officers and men wait patiently for this man of steel, some turning away in embarrassment by this unexpected show of tenderness.
The Jacksons' only child, Julia, was born the following November.
I am privileged to know Julia's daughter, Mrs. Julia Christian Preston, the granddaughter of "Stonewall" Jackson and Mary Anna Jackson. At the age of 103, she is attractive, bright, alert and well, and living in North Carolina. I hope she enjoys this painting of her grandparents as much as I enjoyed painting it.